Cinnamon Treatment for Cholesterol
The effectiveness of cinnamon treatment for cholesterol is still debatable. Only a couple of studies in the last 15 years have studied cinnamon treatment for cholesterol, and they involved specific types of people. A 2003 study on cinnamon treatment for cholesterol showed promising results in people with type 2 diabetes. But a more recent study showed that cinnamon had no effect for postmenopausal women with type 2 diabetes.
An excess of cholesterol in the blood, commonly known as high cholesterol, can be serious, increasing a person's chances of developing heart disease. Because this risk is well known, people are always looking for ways to lower cholesterol.
One of the latest possibilities to surface is using cinnamon to treat cholesterol.
In 2003, a study published in Diabetes Care conducted by researchers in Pakistan showed that for people with type 2 diabetes, large amounts (up to 6 grams a day) of cinnamon decreased LDL cholesterol ("bad" cholesterol) and total cholesterol. HDL ("good" cholesterol) was not affected. In this study, LDL was decreased by 7 percent to 27 percent and total cholesterol by 12 percent to 26 percent.
On the other hand, a study conducted by Dutch researchers and published in the April 2006 Journal of Nutrition showed no effect of a cinnamon treatment for cholesterol for postmenopausal women with type 2 diabetes.
Before you run out and buy large quantities of cinnamon, there are a couple of things to consider. The effects of treating cholesterol with cinnamon have not been widely studied. In fact, only a couple of studies in the last 15 years have looked at this topic, and these studies involved specific types of people. Until larger scientific studies are done, it is not recommended that people rely on cinnamon to treat cholesterol.
Also, there are already a number of lifestyle changes that allow people to lower cholesterol naturally. And if these lifestyle changes are not effective, medications are quite effective in decreasing cholesterol. Both lifestyle changes and cholesterol-lowering drugs have been studied extensively, and their effects and side effects are well known.
The jury's still out on using cinnamon to treat cholesterol, so stick with lifestyle changes and (if necessary) medications that have been proven to lower cholesterol.